A wide format printer isn’t something you see every day in a full office. But this printing standard is quite popular in some circles. Furthermore, outsourcing wide format print jobs can get really expensive fast, especially for high-volume work.
But how do you know if this is the type of printer you need to add to your fleet? Here are three key industries that use the format more than others, where having your own printer can result in big savings.
Top Industries That Need an Office Wide Format Printer
The AEC (architecture, engineering, construction) industry holds wide format printing as the gold standard. Yet not all companies operating in this sector have their own wide format printer installed in the office. Many don’t use one regularly or outsource their print jobs to third-party service providers.
But installing a wide printing solution in the office should be a priority due to its many benefits in workflow, productivity, and service delivery.
Whether contractors or service providers, those working in the construction industry need precise visual representations of construction plans. Standard document printing formats won’t cut it.
A wide format printer can create large documents at higher resolutions where the tiniest notes and details are easy to see and understand. CAD drawings and various other renderings look better on wide print.
These documents can be used to modify building plans, follow instructions on the job site, or present to investors and partners during product demos and presentations. The construction industry isn’t going paperless anytime soon due to the sheer amount of detail that goes into a building or infrastructure plan.
A clear plan lowers the risk of human error and miscommunication between workers, building designers, contractors, city officials, and everyone else involved in a building project.
Architecture companies and design firms may also use wide format printers to create detailed plans for buildings, bridges, and other infrastructure.
Wide media enables tiny details to stand out. This aspect makes it easier to communicate crucial details to everyone involved in a building or infrastructure development project.
Furthermore, architects make much stronger first impressions when using a wide format printer to create presentations. It’s the industry standard, and it looks more professional. Not to mention it really gets the message across and helps present a clear visual of the final design.
But that’s not where the benefits of wide format printing end. Marketing and brand recognition are as important to architects and architecture firms as the quality of their work. Offices, promotional materials, and client communications should capitalize on high-resolution wide format printing.
Whether it’s welcoming signage, successful past projects, or new building plans, the graphics need enough space on their media to send a strong message.
Like architects and contractors, engineers require high-quality blueprints and plans. Moreover, engineers need printers capable of creating fast CAD drawing renditions.
A modern wide format printer can be highly accurate, fast, and print detailed engineering characteristics as instructed with good color fidelity.
But remember that not all projects get the green light with the first proposal. Engineers must often change the plans a couple of times to either address issues or please clients. This is where a wide format printer comes in handy.
Technical bond paper is expensive, and single-document printers don’t always print fast enough when emphasizing photography-like image quality. Wide format printing is an excellent solution for reducing operating costs and minimizing waste without compromising the level of detail of a plan.
Engineers can use standard wide print formatting multiple times for the same plan until they iron out the final details. Then, they can switch to a technical bond paper of the desired size.
Configuring the Wide Format Printer Correctly
Neither architects nor engineers have as much use for high-fidelity colored technical drawings and blueprints. But, Of course, colors help with visualization and can create a lot of separation between various building sections, wiring, HVAC and plumbing, etc.
However, it all comes back to managing costs and being efficient. Because plans change many times before settling on a final drawing, speed and accuracy are more critical than color quality.
A wide format printer can work with multiple media and should be able to adapt to specific industry needs.
Therefore, some actions and features are necessary to ensure no one in this industry wastes time, money, and resources.
- Prioritize sharpness and detail
- Configure the machine for accurate dot placement
- Stick to a resolution no higher than 2,880 x 1,440 DPI
- Use a technical blueprint profile, if available
- Reduce color usage to increase printing speeds
- Ensure the machine can print on the type of media you use most
- Use a machine with scanning and internet file sharing capabilities
- Work with a managed print service provider
- Avoid paying top dollar for Pantone coloring features
Even the smallest tweaks to your wide format printer can be game-changers for workflow, productivity, and overall product quality.
Always Go With the Best Printing Option
Companies and professionals in the AEC sector use wide format printing more often than not. While outsourcing is one way to do things, installing a wide format printer in the office is an excellent solution to prevent productivity loss and streamline the workflow.
Having on-site printers can speed up everything around the office, not to mention help create a more professional office vibe. And given the amount of paper and ink used in AEC companies, a modern wide format printer makes even more sense. It can streamline employee, partner, and client communications while reducing operational costs.
Partnering with the right vendor or managed print service provider can cut costs even more and help optimize printer usage.
If your offices in New York, Edison, Totowa, Pennsauken, and Ft. Washington need better printing solutions, contact Docutrend today to hear about your options.